A good night sleep does more than just keep your nerves off edge and keep you awake all day. It can also keep the weight off.
Researchers at the University of Chicago set out to figure out why lack of sleep has recently been linked to diabetes and weight gain. Matthew Brady and his colleagues tested fat cells from adults who slept eight hours a night for four consecutive nights and then again after the same adults slept only 4 and a half hours a night.
The team found that after the sleep deprived nights fat cells were on average 30 percent less responsive to insulin. Insulin is a hormone that makes muscle, liver and fat cells take up glucose after a meal.
High blood glucose levels are a link to diabetes. The sleep-deprived cells may be a big link to weight gain if the cells are regularly malfunctioning Brady says.